TECH China's home appliance makers eye high-tech chips


China's home appliance makers eye high-tech chips

Global Times

07:18, September 30, 2019


An employee (center) introduces smart home electrical appliances to a visitor during an industry expo in Shanghai on Sunday. (Photo: VCG)

China's home appliance maker Galanz will soon head into the field of high-tech chips and edge into computing and wireless power technology, which will be applied to its products in the future, media reported on Saturday. Industry insiders say that, as major players enter the chip field, the industry can improve its supply chain and help strengthen exploration of smart home appliances.

Galanz introduced its Internet of things (IoT) solution for hardware, software and power during a conference held in Shunde, South China's Guangdong Province, on Saturday, the Xinhua News Agency reported. 

The application of IoT is crucial in the new era of 5G, and traditional smart terminals will become more diversified, Ma Jihua, a veteran industry analyst, told the Global Times on Sunday. 

"The vision of the smart home appliance is to create a sustainable lifestyle, which is inseparable from the development of IoT," said Liang Huiqiang, deputy chairman of Galanz, during the conference.

Galanz has released an IoT home appliance chip, "BF-Xijiao," which will be followed by another IoT chip and artificial intelligence processor in the future, and will be applied in all Galanz products.

Prior to Galanz, Chinese home appliance makers had begun their exploration and development of self-made chips. 

"The home appliance makers all began to develop chips with the purpose of mastering the core technology and standards of smart home appliances. No one wants to be led by others," said Ma.

The chairman of Gree Electric Appliances said in May 2018 that the company would invest 50 billion yuan ($7.02 billion) in the research and development of chips. Another Chinese home appliance maker, Konka Group, announced in June 2018 that it would set up a semiconductor technology division, following TCL, Changhong, Skyworth and other brands.

Investment in chips by home appliance makers will be beneficial to the establishment of an industry ecosystem, Luo Qingqi, a home appliance expert and director of Pa Le Consulting Company, told the Global Times on Sunday. "The firms' entrance into the chip field will be conducive to the improvement and upgrading of the entire industry."

"The biggest issue in the development of smart home appliances in recent years is that the industry has not yet made a uniform standard, which means manufacturers are unable to achieve interconnection, and unable to create a good customer experience in application scenarios," said Ma.

Since the difficulties cannot be solved quickly, the best way forward for the companies is to build an ecosystem for their own smart products in order to realize linkage and control of the industrial chain. Chips are indispensable to realizing such a target, Ma added.

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